Ms Idza Hajar Ahmad Idzam, Nan Muhammad Ridhwan Rosnan and pupil, Muhammad Hibri Nazim from Zul Rafique & Partners’ Litigation practice group succeeded in obtaining leave from the High Court (“Court”) on behalf of Labuan Shipyard and Engineering Sdn Bhd (“Intervener”) to intervene in an admiralty action in rem pursuant to Order 70, rule 16(1) of the Rules of Court 2012[1]. The admiralty action in rem concerns an outstanding balance principal sum payable to the Plaintiff for the supply of dry docking, repair and/or maintenance services to the Vessel (“the action”).

In essence, the Intervener had provided amongst others, ship repair works and general services (“Services”) on the Vessel upon the request of the Defendant, as the client and the Vessel was and remained docked at the Intervener’s dock and/or shipyard. The amount that is due from Defendant to the Intervener for the Services of the Vessel was RM3,484,486.13  (“Outstanding Amount”). The Intervener upon being served with the Writ in Admiralty Action in Rem and Warrant of Arrest in respect of the Vessel had applied to the Court for leave to intervene in the action.

Based on the above provision and authorities relied upon[2], the Court decided to grant leave to the parties to intervene, considering the parties have interest in the action as a party undertaking the responsibility of maintaining and preserving the ship including ship repair works and general services to the Vessel including the dock owner.

The Court concurred with the Intervener’s submissions that, having interest as the dock and/or shipyard owner that provided Services including ship repair works and general services to the Vessel whereby the payment of the outstanding amount is still due and owing, leave ought to be granted to the Intervener to intervene in this action.

[1] a person who has an interest in the property against which an action in rem is brought is under arrest or money representing the proceeds of sale of that property is in court but who is not a defendant to the action may, with the leave of the court, intervene in the action. 
[2] The Soeraya Emas’ Aseamlease Bhd v Owners of and Other Persons Interested in the Ship or Vessel ‘Soeraya Emas’ [1991] 2 SLR (R) 479; The Nagasaki Spirit [1994] 2 SLR (R) 165.
For more insight into this area of law, please contact our Partners in the Litigation Practice Group:
P Jayasingam
Wong Keat Ching
Thavaselvi Pararajasingam
Idza Hajar Ahmad Idzam
Farah Shuhadah Razali
Bailey Leong Pui Yee

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